Interview with Filmmaker Thomas Lemuel (UNION)

UNION played to rave reviews at the January 2022 EXPERIMENTAL Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

Well, it started with the music. I had written this instrumental piece and I wanted it to have a visual element to it. I began by conceptualizing a strong aesthetic, one that was inspired by Japanese installation artist Chiharu Shiota.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?

The most time consuming element was making the web or vascular system, the red sculpture used in the film. It took about 2 and half to three months to complete. Meanwhile, I was planning the film in my head. Then I brought on Delisa the dancer and choreographer and a week later we were filming. Couple weeks of editing later and it was done. About 3 1/2 months start to finish.

3. How would you describe your film in two words!?

Visual candy.

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

Well, like with most good films a whole lot of stuff worked out in my favor. I don’t think any good film is made without an element of luck involved. But the most difficult thing also created one of the best effects in the film. The night we were shooting it was very, very windy. We shot the whole thing outside so all the wind you see, it’s all real. Since the entire backdrop was made from a massive parachute it made for an interesting shoot.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

I was elated. It was so wonderful to hear that people enjoyed it. I was particularly interested in peoples varying interpretations.

Watch the Audience Feedback Video:

6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?

I have always loved movies and film. I pursued the art of scoring film for a while now but only recently began the journey of making my own films.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

Growing up loving film and music composition I watched Amadeus probably 100 times.

8. What other elements of the festival experience can we and other festivals implement to satisfy you and help you further your filmmaking career?

I’m afraid I’m too novice in the filmmaking world to have any good suggestions at this point. I very much enjoyed being involved in this festival.

9. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway. How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site?

It’s been a helpful tool, without question.

10. What is your favorite meal?

Breakfast cereal.

11. What is next for you? A new film?

I’ve been working on a script for a full length and contemplating my next short film.


By matthewtoffolo

Filmmaker and sports fan. CEO of the WILDsound Film and Writing Festival

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